Using water butt

Discussion in 'General Planted Tank Discussions' started by ADA, 23 Nov 2014.

  1. ADA

    ADA Member

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    Just wondering if it's a good idea? The house we just moved into has a 300L water butt that is full, I was thinking is it possible to use in my aquarium? Is there anything I need to do to it? Pros? Cons? Etc?

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  2. JackC

    JackC Newly Registered

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    What surface is the water running off before it gets to it? For example if it's running off a felt roof there may be some oil and other chemicals washed in with it.. If the water looks clean then do a quick API test on it and go from there...


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  3. Michael W

    Michael W Member

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    Hi all,

    I don't trust rainwater running off the roof due to bird poo etc. One problem which may come about is if you live near any industrial areas where pollution maybe a problem. In these situations, it is usually wise to collect rainwater after a few minutes when it is raining. If it was I, I wouldn't place the water butt under or near the roof.

    Pros of rainwater? It is free and won't have a high tds etc, good for top ups and an alternative to RO water.

    Regarding test kits, I don't trust them, never used one and never plan to in the future, they are not accurate.
     
  4. Chris Jackson

    Chris Jackson Member

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    I ran my 400ltr tank with a slow continuous drip from a rainwater water butt but I also installed an old Fluval canister filter onto the butt to add some circulation. In that scenario fertilising was difficult because I never new what was coming from the butt in terms of dead slugs and the like that could creep under the lid... I did it that way so as to avoid the hassle of water changes but I don't think it is ideal by any stretch but by the same token I had few issues over the many years I did this but a large tank is better able to cope with fluctuations I think. During very rainy spells when the butt was always full the drip would speed up a little and this prompted the Angel fish to spawn and also caused more pearling from the plants so it seemed they liked the boost... I had to add KH and GH powders from time to time as well...

    So in short it's probably mostly fine but not really any advantage unless you live somewhere with horrendous tap water.
     
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  5. ADA

    ADA Member

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    Tap water is very hard here
     
  6. Chris Jackson

    Chris Jackson Member

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    Perhaps blend of the two is the order of the day?
     
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  7. dw1305

    dw1305 Expert

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    Hi all,
    I've used rain water since the 1970's without any problems. The only disclaimer I'd give would be that I've always lived some where in the W. of England that was fairly rural.

    I use a really simple technique to check that the water is OK, it is called <"the Daphnia bioassay">, it just means you have Daphnia in the water butt, and as long as there are swimming Daphnia in the water you draw off its OK to use.

    Have a look at <"Storing RO water">, <"If it's yellow, let it mellow and RO is the devil"> & <"Distilled / Deionised Water">.

    cheers Darrel
     
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  8. Chris Jackson

    Chris Jackson Member

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    Brilliant...love the daphnia idea! I never thought of that
     
  9. ian_m

    ian_m Global Moderator Staff Member

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    dw1305 likes this.

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